Brevan Howard Could Be Harmed by Reuters Story, Judge Says

  • Reuters report based on data sent to 36 potential investors
  • Brevan won court ruling blocking Reuters story last week

Brevan Howard Asset Management could have been hurt by a Thomson Reuters Corp. story based on “sensitive confidential information” contained in materials sent to 36 potential investors, a London judge said.

Judge Oliver Popplewell in London, who blocked Reuters from publishing the story last week, laid out the reasons in a heavily redacted ruling released Tuesday. He said the material, which might undermine Brevan’s reputation, contained no misleading self-promotion that “could justify a public interest in publication on the grounds that it would involve exposing hypocrisy or incompetence.”

Reuters argued that there has been increased focus on the lack of transparency related to the fees and performance in the hedge-fund industry, Popplewell said.

Brevan said in a statement that the company “highly values its ability to engage with its investor base on a confidential basis.”

“In order to protect the integrity of its communications, the firm successfully sought and obtained an injunction to restrain the use of a report based on confidential investment information made available to investors that was obtained by Reuters in breach of confidence,” Brevan said.

"Our objective is to publish news and information which is in the public interest, which we believe outweighs the confidentiality concerns put forward in this matter," a Reuters spokesman said. "We are therefore deeply disappointed by this ruling and are reviewing the court’s decision."

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